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Dominant Sri Lanka Take 2-0 Series Lead

Dominant Sri Lanka Take 2-0 Series Lead
Ajantha Mendis (3-33) was the leading Sri Lankan bowler.
©REUTERS / Action Images

Sri Lanka 186-2 (M Jayawardene 77no) beat
England 185-10 (Ravi Bopara 51) by eight wickets
Second One-Day International, Colombo

A dominant Sri Lankan outfit completely outclassed England in the second ODI at Premadasa Stadium in Colombo as the home team registered a comfortable victory by eight wickets.

Earlier in the day, some heavy morning rain delayed the start of the second ODI as the game got curtailed to 45 overs per side.

Alastair Cook’s decision to bat first after winning the toss proved fatal as Sri Lanka deployed its spin attack early in the innings to take England by surprise.

The ploy worked wonders as traditional part-time spinner Tillakaratne Dilshan picked England’s in form batsman Moeen Ali (2) in just the second over of the innings.

England failed to recover from the early blow as Ian Bell (11) and out of form skipper Alastair Cook (22) failed to stabilize the top order.

England were struggling at 37 for three in the tenth over when Joe Root and Eion Morgan (17) steadied the fall with a 38-run partnership for the fourth wicket.

The stand was broken by Thissara Perera as Morgan miscued a drive in covers offering a simple catch to Thirimanne adding to England’s woes.

Ravi Bopara, England’s redeemer from the previous game joined Root in an attempt to rescue England’s sinking ship. Together they piled on 42 runs for the fifth wicket partnership before Sri Lankan skipper Angelo Mathews got rid of dangerous Root. He scored 42 runs from 57 balls.

Wicketkeeper-batsman Jos Buttler (7) failed to make an impression as he was cleaned-up by a brilliant delivery from Dhammika Prasad.

Young Chris Woakes joined Bopara for the seventh wicket partnership stand. The duo added 41 runs before Woakes played a reckless stroke against lethal Ajantha Mendis as Kumar Sangakkara swiftly stumped him out.

England lost their eighth wicket in quick succession as Ravi Bopara departed after reaching his fourteenth ODI fifty. He scored 51 runs from 69 balls before getting out to Mendis in a failed attempt to take on the spinners bowling attack.

James Tredwell (9), Steven Finn (0) and Harry Gurney (1) did not trouble the scorers much as England’s inning folded up in 185 runs with two overs to spare.

Ajantha Mendis (3-33) was the leading Sri Lankan bowler as Tillakaratne Dilshan (2-32) played a vital role in delivering the early blows to England.

Sri Lanka commenced their innings with a bang as opening batsmen Kusal Perera (9) and Tillakaratne Dilshan (29) made their intentions clear at the start of the innings.

Steven Finn provided the much needed breakthrough for England as Kusal Perera found Ravi Bopara in at square leg owing to a poorly attempted pull stroke.

Moeen Ali got his due revenge as Tillakaratne Dilshan threw away his wicket in a disastrous attempt to slog the offbreak bowler.

The veteran pair of Mahela Jayawardene (77 not out) and Kumar Sangakkara (67 not out) constructed an unbeaten partnership of 148 runs for the third wicket as Sri Lanka comfortably cruised home with eight wickets to spare.

With this dominant performance, the home side has taken a 2-0 lead in the seven ODI’s series as the visitors find themselves amidst more questions to be answered before the upcoming ICC Cricket World Cup tournament.

The third match of this seven ODI's series is scheduled to be played at Hambantota on Wednesday, 3rd December.

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